Erev Shabbos Kodesh Mikeitz-Chanukah Inspiration 5775

Donuts, latkes, parties and more and more indulging. Does it ever end? 🙂

This week’s parasha, Mikeitz, teaches us that there is an end to the darkness. The Medrash (Bereishis Rabbah 89:1) cites the verse that states (Iyov 28:3) קֵץ שָׂם לַחשֶׁךְ, he sets a limit to the darkness. HaShem set a time for how long the world will remain in darkness. Why did HaShem put an end to the darkness? The reason is because as long as the Evil Inclination exists, there is darkness and death in the world. When the Evil Inclination is uprooted from the world, then there is no more darkness and death in the world. The Medrash then proceeds to expound this verse regarding Yosef. Why does the Medrash first talk about the Evil Inclination and only then discusses what seems to be the most relevant topic of the parasha, which is Yosef being freed from jail?

The Gemara (Rosh HaShanah 11a) states that on Rosh HaShanah Yosef was freed from jail. The Sfas Emes writes that this teaches us that on Rosh HaShanah every Jew is freed from his own constraints and mental imprisonment. Perhaps we can suggest based on this Medrash that if one wishes to be liberated on Rosh HaShanah, he must first eradicate the Evil Inclination from his midst. When we read these parshiyos on a simple level we can assume that Yosef was imprisoned and then he was freed from jail. On a deeper level, however, it would be safe to assume that while imprisoned, Yosef exerted himself to remove his Evil Inclination, and this was the catalyst for him to gain his freedom.

Chanukah is referred to as the Festival of Lights, as we exit the proverbial darkness and enter into the world of light and joy. HaShem should allow us to rid ourselves once and for all of the Evil Inclination and we should merit basking in His Holy Light with the arrival of Moshiach Tzidkeinu and the building of the Third Bais HaMikdash, speedily, in our days.

Have a Great Shabbos and a Freilechen and Lichtige Chanukah and a Good Chodesh!

Rabbi Adler
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